JOHANNESBURG – South Africa has been hit by a double whammy: Stats SA released two sets of economic data today and both results were disappointing.
The unemployment rate has risen sharply in the first quarter of this year, with 26,4 percent of potentially economically active South Africans not working.
South Africa has nearly 36-million employable people, but only 15,5-million are currently employed.
Five-and-a-half million are out of work, and the rest are not economically active.
At the same time, economic growth has slowed.
GDP grew by 1,3-percent in the first quarter of this year. That's compared to 4,1-percent in the final quarter of last year.
Officials say load-shedding is one of the factors behind the sluggish growth.
Manufacturing and agriculture took the biggest knock, with Stats SA saying they were the worst performers during the period.